Kariobangi Sharks maul Sofapaka to clinch SportPesa Shield
Kariobangi Sharks are the 2018 SportPesa Shield champions following a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Sofapaka in a nerve-wrecking final on Saturday.
George Abege’s 27th minute strike was cancelled out by Stephen Waruru on 43 minutes for a 1-1 stalemate at the break in a match played at an empty Moi International Sports Centre (MISC) Kasarani.
Kevin Kimani thought he had powered Batoto ba Mungu to their fourth domestic cup gong with a 58th minute header but Sydney Lokale, who replaced Henry Juma on 59 minutes, cut their party short with an equalizer 10 minutes to the final whistle.
Abege then broke Sofapaka’s hearts with what proved to be the match winner in the 83rd minute after Wycliffe Kasaya, who looked shaky in between the sticks, failed to collect an easy ball.
Kimani would have sent the game into extra time and possibly a penalty shootout, but he blasted wide a penalty moments later after Geoffrey Shiveka committed a foul inside the box.
Apart from booking a ticket to next year’s Caf Confederation Cup for the first time in their history, Sharks, who fell 2-0 to AFC Leopards in last year’s final, also pocketed Sh2 million in prize money. Runners up Sofapaka took home Sh1 million.
In the playoff match, earlier on at the same venue, AFC Leopards goalkeeper Ezekiel Owade saved Abdallah Hamisi’s sudden death penalty to help his team to a 5-4 win over Ulinzi Stars on post-match penalties.
The two teams had settled for a 1-1 draw in regulation time. Bernard Ongoma shot Ulinzi ahead on 73 minutes from the penalty spot but Eugene Mukhangula levelled five minutes to time sending the game direct to the shootouts.
For their win, Leopards claimed Sh750,000 while fourth place finishers Ulinzi went home with Sh500,000.